We arrived on Tuesday to find the allotment had been transformed into a winter wonderland!
The snow was ankle deep over the entire allotment, the pond frozen and plants blanketed or just peeping through the surface. As the firepit was inaccessible for tea making we decided to close up for the day. The paths were great for sledging, but a nightmare under foot or wheelbarrow.
Unfortunately, others had made it to the allotment before us - there were car tracks up to the gate and large footprints making their way towards the shed at the top of the allotment.
Warren discovered that our beloved wood burning stove had been stolen, which had only recently been secured in place and tested out. Nothing else was taken from the site and it had been carefully removed so it could be sold on.
The stove was made from recycled metal including old garden forks to add to its charm and relevance to our project. It had successfully made the shed cosy and comfortable for the few times we were able to use it during the cold working days.
This had made our shed almost complete and, with a lick of paint and a few furnishings, it would have been a home away from home. We would have had the opportunity to finally put our classroom into action; or hire it as a meeting venue for local groups.
Alas, we shall now have to wait a little longer for the children and volunteers to have a warmer treehouse to perch in.
If anyone has ANY information about the incident or think they may have seen it, please do not hesitate to get in touch. We were unable to put it under our insurance in time, so we will be looking for another stove just as soon we have the money to buy another.
If you would like to donate to us or know of a cheap replacement in the meantime, please let us know.